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Finding your Self-Esteem

Updated on October 2, 2011

Rene Descartes made the much quoted statement “I think therefore I am”. Since the beginning of time people have tried to understand who they are, what their nature is, and how they can find themselves. I propose that each of us has a nature that is specific to us. We are often let down by the idea that we are not the prom queen, star quarterback, or the president. Our focus on the accomplishments of others forever binds us in a miserable belief that we are not good enough, not smart enough, not rich enough or not pretty enough. These ideas are not only false; they are a trap that prevents each of us from reaching our full potential.

            Our happiness is not based on what we have or even our achievements. Our happiness is based on the type of people we choose to be. Everyday you have the option to be a good person, to do for others, and to look for ways to be a better person than the day before. It sounds hokey to think that we base our thoughts about ourselves on our behavior but, in fact we do. There is no greater feeling than helping another person or doing what is right despite the lack reward.       

            We consider our lives in terms of what we have accomplished monetarily instead of the accomplishments we have made in helping others. It is a deceptive idea to think that we are judging ourselves through monetary gain. I have never heard anyone make a good character statement about someone because of what that person owns. Yet I have heard many people spoken of because, they have unselfishly done things for the good of others.

            Our real judgments of other people have to do with the type of people we know them to be. When we choose our friends do we choose them for their monetary value? Or do we trust in those people who have shown us they are good and trustworthy. If we judge others by morality, then it is obvious that on some level we judge ourselves in this way as well. When we do things that that are disappointing to ourselves it breaks down our self-esteem. We begin to believe that we are not good. The happiness leaves us and the misery over who we are, creeps in.

            While we cannot all be the star we can all like ourselves by being good people. Being a good person is not easy for everyone. Many of us were raised in households were it was a daily activity to tear each other down and treat others disrespectfully. These backgrounds can scar our habits, yet we have the ability to overcome the way we were raised and be better people.

            A friend of mine who was a nurse made the statement to me that she could tell the people who had been good to others while they were alive. “The people who had close families and were loving  to people always had visitors, people mourned their loss. But people, who were not good or were horrible to those around them, had no one. I often saw families quarrel about inheritance in front of dyeing patients who I believe were not very good to others during life. Just a few rooms down there were whole families gathered around someone they loved to share the last few moments with an amazing person”

            Her words are a testament to me that we should live life so that others will celebrate our life. All the money, fame, or prestige in the world will not buy us more time to do the kind things we should do everyday.  Through being good people, we can all like ourselves regardless of our situation. By being a person we would admire, we can like ourselves regardless of accomplishment. It does not matter who you were yesterday, what matters is that today you are the better person. After all life is short… choose this day to like yourself!


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